Asked May 3, 2019, 7:22 AM EDT

Hello, My carrots germinated on 4/18. The plants are still very tiny, about 1 in tall. See photo. Is this normal? Direct seed took 23 days to germinate. Is it better to start indoors and then transplant? Thank you, Van

Montgomery County Maryland vegetables abiotic issues

1 Response

Hi- carrots can take 12-15 days to germinate even under optimum conditions. Although they can germinate at soil temps as low as 40 degrees F. they germinate quickest when those temps are 80 degrees F.

Soil conditions are also very important. Carrots will germinate in, and grow best in, soils that are high in organic matter, with a fine crumb-like structure. Soils that are non-uniform, high in clay, cloddy, with rough uneven seed beds, will impede germination and growth.

Some gardeners grow carrot transplants. The trick is to grow them in a relatively deep pot so that the tap root does not touch the bottom prior to transplanting. If it does, you will get forked and distorted carrots.